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Linked List in Data Structures through C language

Linked List

Linked List is linear and dynamic data structure. The list is a collection of elements called nodes and each node is created dynamically. Linked List comes into picture to overcome the disadvantages of Array. In array it is not possible to vary the size. The size is fixed and the memory is allocated statically when it is declared. During the compilation time the memory is allocated to array. In case of linked list memory is allocated at the time of execution, so the size can vary according to the user wish. In case of Linked List only linear search is possible and it is difficult to apply sorting.

          Each node in the linked list consists of two parts. One part is called as INFO(information) part and the other part is called LINK or NEXT (pointer to next node) part. The INFO part contains the information about the element which is same type for all the nodes and the link part contains address or location of the next element in the List. As one element is linked with the other element, so the list is called as Linked List. The address of the first node of the linked list is stored in an external pointer called ROOT or FIRST.


  Graphical representation of Linked List  

         ROOT contains the address of the first node FIRST, FIRST node ‘s link field contains the address of the second node SECOND, SECOND node’s link filed contains the address of the third node THIRD and THIRD node’s link field contains the address of the fourth  node FOURTH. Fourth node the last node’s link field of the list contains a NULL address to specify the end of the list. In this case NULL address is marked with X (cross). In some representations it is marked to point to ground symbol.


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Binary Search Linear Search Works only on sorted items. such as  1,2,3,4,5,6  etc
Works on sorted as well as unsorted items. 12,4,5,3,2,1 etc Very efficient if the items are sorted Very efficient if the items are less and present in the beginning of the list. such as Suppose your list items are : 12,3,4,5,1 and you want to search 12 number then you get beginning in the list. Works well with arrays and not on linked lists. Works with arrays and linked lists.
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Memory representation of Linked List Data Structures in C Language

Memory representation of Linked List

             In memory the linked list is stored in scattered cells (locations).The memory for each node is allocated dynamically means as and when required. So the Linked List can increase as per the user wish and the size is not fixed, it can vary.

               Suppose first node of linked list is allocated with an address 1008. Its graphical representation looks like the figure shown below:

      Suppose next node is allocated at an address 506, so the list becomes,

  Suppose next node is allocated with an address with an address 10,s the list become,

The other way to represent the linked list is as shown below:

 In the above representation the data stored in the linked list is “INDIA”, the information part of each node contains one character. The external pointer root points to first node’s address 1005. The link part of the node containing information I contains 1007, the address of next node. The last node …